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Laptop/Notebook Recommendation Needed

mummummum
December 3rd, 2006, 08:08 AM
Old faithful here is nearing the end of her days. I can't complain, she's had a good life and at eight years old, well ~ let's just say she's got more than a few health problems. But don't worry, she won't be PTS, she'll be re-homed where she can retire into palliative care gracefully...:D

I'm thinking of laptop/notebook but, as I am a know-nothing I'm hoping some of you more current in the giga-world can help with a recommendation. I don't have a great deal of money to spend (about a thousand) but I also don't need anything shmancy. I'm not a gamer although I may want to be able to watch DVD's. I would like to be able to install photo-editing programs like Photoshop. I need a larger screen with high pixellation/ resolution. I would also need to be able to run the usual office programs (Word, Excel, Access etc.). It won't be travelling very often as I have one at work for that purpose so ease of portability isn't really an issue but WiFi would be great.

I've started reading various trade and on-line consumer reviews but, I'm quickly going into information overload (and they seem all over the map). Any thoughts or helpful hints?

wdawson
December 3rd, 2006, 09:53 AM
http://www.staples.ca/ENG/Catalog/cat_sku.asp?CatIds=88%2C89%2C90,4497&webid=666967&affixedcode=WW

got this for our son in college.....he loves it,watches and burns dvd's...has a memory card reader....and much more.....about $1200....but i found it to be one of the best feature to cost....

Hunter's_owner
December 3rd, 2006, 10:01 AM
I got a Gateway:shrug:

I am pleased with it, haven't had any problems and have owned it over a year now.

mummummum
December 3rd, 2006, 10:01 AM
Yes this hp got good reviews. Here's a question...how can it have a 17" wide screen if it is only 15.16" 's long ?

mummummum
December 3rd, 2006, 10:03 AM
I got a Gateway:shrug:

I am pleased with it, haven't had any problems and have owned it over a year now.

Which one ?

wdawson
December 3rd, 2006, 10:06 AM
monitors are measured diagonally...

Hunter's_owner
December 3rd, 2006, 10:16 AM
Which one ?


Gateway Intel Centrino Duo T2050 1.6GHz Media Center Laptop (MX6920)

I got it from Futureshop

jesse's mommy
December 3rd, 2006, 10:34 AM
Alright, I asked honey to email me a suggestion after I read him your requirements (he's a computer geek :evil: ). Here is his suggestion:

http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/HP-Pavilion-17-Widescreen-Notebook-PC-DV9005US/sem/rpsm/oid/160284/catOid/-12963/rpem/ccd/productDetail.do

17" wide screen, geoforce 6150 graphix card will play most games and great resolution. Very fast Turion 53 bit x2 dual core processor and 1 gig of memory. Has g/b wireless for use anywhere. Webcam, dual headphones out for watching dvd's on the plane. Has lightscribe dvd burner, and a 5 in 1 card reader for camera, or digital video. Also firewire for digital video camera, s-video out for watching movies in hotels, etc.

wdawson
December 3rd, 2006, 10:38 AM
thats the one i suggested:D

jesse's mommy
December 3rd, 2006, 11:00 AM
That's funny. I didn't even realize it. I'm doing my itinerary for my vacation as I'm reading these too. God help the girl who is covering for me this week because I'm not even paying attention to what I'm sending her. :eek:

jessi76
December 3rd, 2006, 01:02 PM
I'm a mac person, so I'd recommend an iBook. I've had one for years, and LOVE it.

dtbmnec
December 3rd, 2006, 07:57 PM
The only thing that I've heard about HP is that the customer service sucks....

I've got a Toshiba and it lasted pretty well....*shrugs* its not the best but then again I didn't pay for the best either....mine's having some issues now that the warranty has expired (of course) but for the most part its ok....

Try at www.tigerdirect.ca....they tend to have great deals on things and not all of it is refurbished either....might not be EXACTLY what you want but still its cheap....

My friends all have Dells now....I think they're ok but they seem rather clunky...of course my friends also play WoW (World of Warcraft for the uninitiated) so that's less of a concern....

WiFi is pretty much standard on laptops anymore.

Megan

jesse's mommy
December 3rd, 2006, 08:13 PM
The only thing that I've heard about HP is that the customer service sucks....


I personally never had a problem with HP customer service. They always helped me whenever I had any issues. I guess it's just who you talk to. :shrug:

Byrd
December 3rd, 2006, 09:21 PM
I got a Gateway:shrug:

I am pleased with it, haven't had any problems and have owned it over a year now.

Hey, ditto.

And it was only $800 at Future Shop.

mummummum
December 3rd, 2006, 10:21 PM
I'm a mac person, so I'd recommend an iBook. I've had one for years, and LOVE it.

I understand they are superior for graphics, photo-editing and the like ~ is that so from your experience ? I've never used one, but I understand you can run a dual operating system so that you can access microsoft "stuff". What do you like abot Macs ~ as in what makes them a better choice over all the others?t Do you think they are worth the extra expense ? I have to admit I'm a little fascinated by them but, I worry about a Beta-VHS repeat especially with the onset of Microsoft's Vista base.

mummummum
December 4th, 2006, 06:14 AM
Alright, I asked honey to email me a suggestion after I read him your requirements (he's a computer geek :evil: ). Here is his suggestion:

Thanks jesse's mommy ~ that was very thoughtful of you !

jessi76
December 4th, 2006, 08:49 AM
I understand they are superior for graphics, photo-editing and the like ~ is that so from your experience ? I've never used one, but I understand you can run a dual operating system so that you can access microsoft "stuff". What do you like abot Macs ~ as in what makes them a better choice over all the others?t Do you think they are worth the extra expense ? I have to admit I'm a little fascinated by them but, I worry about a Beta-VHS repeat especially with the onset of Microsoft's Vista base.

I'm a graphic artist, so I rely on Mac. so yes, I think they are superior for graphics. iPhoto, which came preloaded on my iBook is EASY BREEZY to use. it has minor editing capabilities - but for more advanced, I use photoshop. I don't think they are much more expensive, I paid about $1100 for mine. In fact, I find them MUCH easier than a regular PC. More "user friendly". and, I run Microsoft office just fine on my mac's.

HunterXHunter
December 4th, 2006, 12:28 PM
If you're not going to move around it it much, why not get a desktop instead :confused:

But if you insist on getting a laptop, then I recommend an Asus. You may have never heard of Asus laptops, but Asus has been around for quite a long time making reliable motherboards for PCs. In fact, they're the best brand out there for motherboards.

One thing you have to pay attention to when you're buying a laptop is: get one with and EXTERNAL graphics card (as opposed to shared memory graphics card). The speed difference is HUGE! Do not fall for those "128MB graphics card" crap unless it's on a separate card.

I don't want to get into too much details but...
512MB RAM + 8MB ext. graphics card trumps a 1024MB RAM with 128MB shared graphics memory any day!

I have 2 laptops: and IBM X30 (one of those mini ones with no internal drives) for portability and an Averatec 2200 (it was a great deal when I got it a couple of years ago, but now it's just a paperweight that I don't turn on anymore. I really like the IBM and have had no problems with it whatsoever. But the next that I buy would be an Asus.

mummummum
December 5th, 2006, 02:47 PM
I have an IBM desktop at home which only because of it's age am I replacing. I'm interested in a laptop/ notebook because of space considerations. I have too much STUFF. It would also be nice to plunk my bony behind on the couch or the bed with the dawgs while I'm dithering about. Usually I have one dog on her bed beside me, one on the loveseat behind me and one pretty much under my deskchair when I'm dabbling. :rolleyes: Gets a little much...

In one of the reviews (CNET- Asia) I read, a fellow who was a longtime Asus fan and a self-described power user for as long as laptops have been around had good things to say about Asus but became a vry enthusiastic Macbook fan with his latest purchase.

x.l.r.8
December 11th, 2006, 09:32 PM
If space is a consideration look at the minimac, it's loaded and it's tiny, you get to keep your monitor, mouse and keyboard. Office works well on the mac except the initial start time seems to take forever. However I have an old Prismo Powerbook and keep thinking about the new I book, it's $1500 what ever way you look at it, however I used to hate anything mac untill I got one, after about 3 months I realised I had no pop-ups, no virus warnings, and I didn't ever have to restart it. It was fast and reliable. My old PC was an overclocked 850 athlon to 1 Gig, I had extended daughterboards to carry extra ram and it lived in a freezer and I still managed to burn the board occasionally, bit by bit I started selling off my PC parts and worringly I rely heavily on my powerbook, 5 years later I'm still using it with minor upgrades (ram maxed out, Combo drive where the DVD rom was and an external firewire hard-drive) and the airport works better than most of the new wireless stuff. I have to use an external bluetooth dongle but now I no longer use the PCMCIA card reader I may well just get one to go in there. I recommend macs to anyone who is willing to take the plunge, if you have reservations stick with the PC, it will be more troublesome, but it's trouble others will be able to help you with. Safari wipes the floor with IE, and most of the software is easy to interface with and usually free to upgrade. I found OS 9 to be everthing Windows 98 wasn't, then XP was very similar to OS 9.2.2 platform, then mac went the next step with OS 10.4.7 (fine tuned version of the original OS 10) I haven't played with the newest version of OS as my computer is a) pretty much running at it's fullest capacity, and b) it does everything I ever wanted it to do. In 5 years I have spent probably $300 extra on the computer, in the same time you will probably look to change a PC 3 times and spent a lot more on upgrades. You cannot argue that wintell has made significant inprovements to there operating system, but they have a long way to go to be as fluid as the mac's. This is all just my opinion, I have been playing with computers since the ZX81, and the best selling point I have seen for a PC is the warranty, and for that I have known 2 people with Sony's and when they went wrong, they were replaced with newer models and the difference (technology always gets cheaper) was also refunded, they also salvaged what they could from one of the hard-drives and put the information onto a memory pen, I like that kind of service. Also for a laptop play with the keyboard, find one that feels right, your not going to be able to change it like you would a desktop so you better be comfortable with it (mac's have excellent keyboards :D ) ideally it will have side ports for USB/firewire ect. rather than at the back, if possible find the cost of a replacement battery as you will possibly need one, it's also good to have for long trips watching DVD's. Built in Bluetooth should be a requirement and wifi would be nice, especially they way printers and camera's are being made now to that standard. A high powered graphic card while desirable will suck the juice out of a battery as will wireless internet. A wireless mouse makes the laptop expierinence more enjoyable, there's nothing worse than sitting down and having 6 wires laying everywhere, thats not the reason for a laptop in the first place, ideally you will have a power cable, posibly an external mouse and you will have everything else inside the laptop rather than attached as a periphial on the outside. Also look to see if there are generic power leads as you may find excessive use will damage the plug connection and if others are not available (like for the old macs :sad: ) you may have to do a lot of hunting. You really can't go that wrong with main brands as the reliability of components is much better than 5 years ago. Also the Beta-VHS arguement, the Beta was always a better system but the industry supported VHS, just like it supported Windows for home use, however now people demand more, and Apple is still able to shine despite being hated for so many for so long. Is it worth the extra, initally no, but 3 years down the line, every single cent, YES!.

mummummum
December 11th, 2006, 09:58 PM
Ummm... how about I just giveyou the money and you can go buy it ?!:D ;) :rolleyes:

x.l.r.8
December 11th, 2006, 11:58 PM
I don't think I've ever seen that much money so it's probably best you don't let me have that kind of temptation :D On a plus side Mac do soem great incentives for student's all you have to do is find one, they were giving away ipods for the back to school program and not the mini's or shuffles either. There are loads of mac places in Toronto that would be worth going to have a look at, most mac outlets don't try and sell you what you don't need.:thumbs up

badger
December 12th, 2006, 01:14 AM
A friend of mine just bought a Mac wireless laptop and she LOVES it. I've got a Dell desktop, bought it five years ago and still works like a charm. But I think DELL laptops are overpriced.

mummummum
December 16th, 2006, 10:59 PM
Thanks everyone ! I'm going to kidnap a student and head to the Apple store during Boxing Week ~ if my drastic plastic has still got a pulse that is. :D

Prin
December 17th, 2006, 02:02 AM
wow, they're so "big" now... My desktop only has a 40gig hard drive (bought on a student budget).:D

I like the apples... But then again, I haven't really shopped much (obviously).